Get Active Sailing/Watersports

Funding required£2,125
Delivery timeframe5 months

The Pitch

Problem statement

Blind and partially sighted people find it difficult to access mainstream sport. (British Blind Sport’s Overcoming Barriers to Participation 2014). This is reinforced by well documented research that notes one of the consequences of sight loss is a sedentary lifestyle. (Mir, 2004). Blind/partially sighted people tell us how beneficial tailored sporting activities can be, as Denise aged 52 says ’Activities are vital for anyone with sight loss to find themselves again. The sense of improved wellbeing it provides is simply life changing.’ From a survey during the pandemic May 2020 (165 responses) 98% felt lonely/isolated during the pandemic, losing confidence to go outdoors again.


Working with the Anderton Outdoor Activities Centre in Chorley, Galloway’s wants to provide 5 sailing/water sessions. Pre COVID we ran a pilot of 5 sailing sessions with the centre, the sessions were oversubscribed. The goal is to ensure blind/partially sighted people have the opportunity to be physically active, to feel connected with peers and improve their health and wellbeing. Funding detail: Sailing Tuition 2 specialist instructors @£380 per morning session for 5 sessions £1900.Galloways Minibus 100 miles round trip x .45p x 5 sessions £225. Galloway’s will fund the Outdoor Coordinator’s time and expenses from the Volunteer Divers. 24 Blind/partially sighted people will participate.

Why are we best placed to deliver?

Galloway’s Society for the Blind have supported people with sight loss for over 150 years. We are a known and trusted organisation. We have an existing Get Active programme with 170 followers, led by a Coordinator who is visually impaired himself. He understands the challenges that blind/partially sighted people face, acting as an inspiration. We have an existing relationship with the Anderton Outdoor Centre, who have expert trainers from a successful sailing/water pilot in 2019. Galloway's have 2 minibuses and volunteer drivers so will provide the transport. Feedback from 2019 pilot shows the benefits: ‘it just gives you so much more confidence to do other things.' (Marion, aged 88).

Focus Areas

Delivery plan

Budget breakdown

Sailing/Watersports tuition from 2 experienced instructors from the Anderton Centre @£380 x 5 morning sessions£1,900
Galloways travel costs - 100 miles round trip x 0.45p x 5 sessions£225


24 people

Expected impact

100% of participants will be more active. 90% of participants will feel connected and less isolated. 90% of participants will feel healthier and have improved wellbeing. 75% of participants will have the confidence to try new activities. We will collect data on numbers attending with the Get Active coordinator keeping a register. We will take photos and audio recordings of participants whilst they are at the activity. We will promote the sessions and feedback on our social media, What’s On Guide, Galloways Eye publication and Alexa Skill. These publications reach over 1000 blind/partially sighted people. We will be trialling the use of the free University of Lancaster’s Leapfrog tools to support the assessment measurement. We are in discussions with the University about how we use these tools, with blind/partially sighted people.

Track record

Galloway's Society for the Blind has an existing Get Active Programme which has over 170 followers. Pre Covid we undertook sailing/watersports sessions and worked in conjunction with Anderton Outdoors Centre, amongst other centres. Billie aged 50 who participated in 2019 tells us the impact of these sessions. Billie is wheelchair bound and registered blind and says ' All I want is to get out and do. I want to be active, to see what I can achieve. Getting out with Galloway’s means I can actually have conversations with people other than my carer. The social interaction is a very important part of it...When I’m on a boat or a board I’m an equal.... it’s so liberating.' By providing these sessions blind/partially sighted people are able to try an activity that would not normally be available to them - due to issues over mainstream instruction/transport and cost. But the impact to these individuals from having the opportunity is life changing.

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Galloway's Society for the Blind

Registered charity